Darkness overcame her with no man bold enough to ever blame her. She gasped for breath from the choking shadows that bound her to her chains. The dark, cold, shivering feeling that death was on its way.
Is it nothing more than just death coming, or is it rather rising to power against the young, bounded, shackled-inchains woman, disabling her from moving? Screaming would do her no good for she is bound for judgment and swift retribution was coming at the dawn. The guards would laugh at her pain and spit on her for what she did. What crime could she have committed to deserve such a catastrophic fate?
Love was a cruel and sick fool. A mere jest of a woman’s thought meant certain treason against a mighty man. She had asked her father if she can share the blessed matrimony with the man she loved more than life itself. He was neither a wealthy nor suitable man to her father’s eyes. Disgusted, the father of the young girl warned the child to not break the rule of her owner’s law, “Do not even speak to that man or suffer a fate so cruel that the one called death itself would mourn the person bound to this fate.” And yet the young girl did not listen. She ignored her father’s spoken word and went to the man she loved most. His name was Peter and he was a shoemaker. Not even all the riches or wealth in the world could replace the love she had in her heart for this young man.
One night, she went to Peter’s house. His eyes were blue as the ocean’s water; his long, flowing hair golden blond and silky smooth; his toned body was muscular but not overly massive. This was the man she would spend the rest of her life with. He was a tad bit older than the young lass, but that meant nothing to the young lady. They embraced in joyous but forbidden sexual pleasure, and before the night had ended, the young lady fell asleep in his bed.
That next grim dusky morning, a loud slice from a sword scared the young girl from her bed and screamed and looked to see the corpse of the once-handsome man she called her lover. Now bathed in blood, the guards took her from the house, stripped her down, and spat on her. She was beaten and laughed at for loving someone she cared for. And while she sat in her cage chained, starving, and freezing, she smiled, laughed, and giggled.
The guards woke disturbed. Why out of all the things this young criminal had done and after all she suffered, would she smile and be happy? Any other mortal person whose fate was on the line would tremble in fear. But still, this young girl smiled at the guards.
The guards asked her, “Young lady, do you know where you are? Is your sanity finally lost to the darkness you sit in?”
She smiled and replied, “My lover always told me he wanted me to be happy no matter what. I’ll give him his desire before my fate is sealed.”
The guards were amazed by this woman’s ability to look at a brighter part of life more than mortal traditions say. They felt guilty for the young girl. The guards realized what evil they had wrought upon themselves and her. They knew deep down in their hearts that the law was wrong. Love is not to be determined for one by another. The guards set her free. The girl was shocked but smiled at them and said, “Thank you for letting my heart free.”
The guards can never imagine how wrong they were. But they had atoned for their sins. And atonement was exactly what was needed. They felt a sense of self-righteousness and fellowship among them. They knew deep down that despite the fact that they had brought themselves to the lowest of the low—the bottom feeders of the world—then and there, they had become righteous men.
The young girl looked at this new freedom with a sense of dread. This freedom, although it meant she would be spared a fate worse then death itself, also filled her with despair, the likes of which she had never felt before. She had lost the love of her life and was filled with such torment that it tore her from the inside of her emotionally troubled heart. She would have gladly faced judgment if it meant seeing her beloved Peter again.
As she wandered in her hometown—avoiding local authority and being subtle, not to mention or hint what her true identity was—she looked to the sky and saw the sun setting on her. Night was coming, and that meant she had to find shelter soon. The part of town she resided in now was next to the Dark Forest.
The Dark Forest was filled with dark creatures: demonic beings, dark entities, and horrific monstrosities no person in her town had ever dared to face directly. About one hundred feet or so from where she stood was an inn. She walked slowly toward the inn; the chilling but welcoming breeze was blowing at her very harshly. Whispers seemed to make subtle hints in her ear as the chilling air seemed to blow her toward the forest. Yes, they seemed to whisper a sentence over and over again.
“We await your arrival, my lady,” said the dark chilling voices.
Startled, the young lady looked around her to see no one anywhere near her.
“Who speaks to me and what do you want from me? My heart is already destroyed and shattered,” the girl named Rebecca asked.
The winds seem to chuckle lightly at her but not without a hint of its darker tone.
“I mourn your loss, Rebecca. You seem lost, confused, and hopeless. Is there any way I may help you, child?” asked the now-warm and comforting voices.
The wind seemed to be getting warmer and more welcoming. She couldn’t help but reply back truthfully while attempting to lie to the voice—even though the lie would be futile, for the voices could see every part of her.
“I try to be strong, stranger, but I cannot. I’ve lost my lover and have been condemned to death, or worse, because I loved someone. And now my life is in ruins. What can you do? You can give me a new life and return my lover to my arms,” Rebecca stated.
The winds seem to blow harder and the whispers seemed louder. “We can help you with all of that, my dear. We can renew your soul with life, invigorate you with purpose, and help you achieve your dark goals,” the dark whispers declared.
“Dark goals? What could I possibly not have that I would want to achieve?” Rebecca asked.
A brief pause and the winds seemed to blow her in the direction of the Dark Forest.
“We’ll show you the way, Rebecca. We’ll show you how to do everything you have ever wanted to do,” the demonic whispers said, as if a group of voices was now whispering directly in her ear.
She looked in the direction of the Dark Forest and noticed that a whole trail of trees was missing.
“Enter the forest, my child, we’ll show you where to go from there. We’ll help you,” the whispers declared.
She pondered at all that had been told to her. She had nowhere to go and no place to live. She had nothing, and if she stayed in town, she knew deep down eventually she would be caught and rechained. But she also knew in her heart that these whispers in her ear were the voices of the demons that devoured and tortured mortal beings for enjoyment.
“We know you’re hesitant to join us. I see you’re nearly starving, my dear. I’m going to give you a gift to show you our loyalty,” the demons told her.
And with that, dark magic lifted her into the air, and the dark energies immediately sank into her heart. She felt scared at first but as she noticed a warm feeling in her whole bodily tingling inside her, she became rejuvenated. Her hunger slowly began to disappear. She sensed darkness empowering her with shadow energy.
She seemed to notice she could do anything, even control anyone. She looked at the world as if it was rightfully hers to command and control. She felt the time for her revenge had now come. She fell to her knees, head bowing down.
“Look up to us, our new disciple,” the demons declared to her. She immediately obeyed. And as she looked up without fear or lack of conviction for her new dark power, she looked at the five demons. Three of the demons were male, wearing heavy steel armor and have demonic wings that looked like the wings of a dragon, spreading past longer than their bodies. Their monstrous jaws and fangs, barely being concealed by their mouths, were shut. The females were a bit smaller but no less deadly; their wings like those of a bat, and even though they were dark fallen beings, they were the most gorgeous beings Rebecca had ever scene.
“You’ve been given the means to an end, for I have made you into a hybrid specie. You’re now a half-demon, half-human creature. You’ll travel through the forest and face three trials. If you are to succeed all three and no less, we’ll grant you your heart’s desire!” stated the largest male demon sitting in the middle of the five.
“And if I should fail?” she asked with no hesitation.
“Then you’ll be fed to and devoured by the lesser creatures of the forest,” the female to the left of largest demon stated.
Rebecca grinned. She felt a confidence building inside her, which she had never felt. She was usually shy. Even around Peter, she would act shyly and sometimes be secluded and solitary like a clam. But now, she felt no fear. She was a new person even if the person she had become was a dark, demonic entity.
“I’ll pass your trial and earn my just reward. None shall stand in my way, or they’ll face a grim demise from my dark power.”
With a flex of her muscles and a gesture of her arms, dark energy in the form of a black light illuminated her body and began to make her feel even more invincible.
“Impressive for a beginner of the demonicraft.” The female leader chuckled to the right of her leader.
“You’re much more powerful than most disciples who first started off. You’re given the first step, don’t fail us, Rebecca, or face your own grim demise,” said the male demon on the far left.
“We have one more gift for you, child,” said the demon on the far right of the middle demon.
And with that, all five of them raised their arms and a circular black energy was raised just above her head. It grew bigger every second until ten seconds passed, and it started to scorch Rebecca’s back. She screamed in agony but did not move an inch. The energy started to mark her back in the form of a tattoo. It continued to burn her very flesh but not pierce or destroy it.
The energy finally stopped searing her back, and what came from it was a black dragon tattoo. The wings spread throughout her back, going through the sides and a claw on each wing going on her breast, and pointing in the middle was a hollow skull between each breast. They had now truly marked a disciple of the demonicraft.
“This tattoo is a mark of favor from us, child. It will help you control your power and learn more about the demonicraft,” said the female to the left of the middle demon.
She looked down to the skull tattoo, and with a mere gesture of her arm with her hand over it, it started to feel warm. All of a sudden, the empty eye sockets of the skull began to glow with two eyeballs in each socket. She then noticed her senses were much keener than ever. She could hear the whispers of every villager in their houses; see through stone, wood, and metal itself; taste the great forbidden flavor of life and life force that could be used for her consumption; smell every scent of anyone who had done her wrong; and feel the emotions everyone around her were experiencing.
“Thank you, my masters. I assure you, I will not fail on my mission,” Rebecca assured them.
The middle demon smiled at her. “I have a feeling you’re correct, Rebecca. Try not to prove us wrong.” The middle and most powerful demon snickered. She gave all of them a wicked smile. And with that, the demons disappeared into the night and out of sight. She looked around her and saw the village’s lights still on. The night was still young, and a party was occurring at the town hall. The young seductress intended to have some fun before departing on her journey.
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